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Potential child minder

(5 Posts)
Notnapping Wed 31-Aug-11 12:13:50

I've been thinking about cjildminding since ds2 was born and I basically can't afford the childcare fees to work. I like spending time with kids and think it would be a good way of working whilst looking after mine!

But I have some questions if anyone could help?

I have a dog obv whilst he's no bother with kids he'd be kept away from them but would this be an issue?

I have a 3 bed house so only one living room/dining room/ kitchen/ downstairs toilet and upstairrs bathroom is that enough space?

How many kids are you allowed to watch - I've ds1 whose 5 and at school and a 6 month old.

How much do you make as a childminder roughly?

I don't have previous kids experience exept my two and babysitting - have a business degree I'll prob never use! - is that an issue

How long did the registration process take ? I'm in Scotland if that makes a difference!

Thanks any comments welcome

apotomak Wed 31-Aug-11 13:03:18

Dog is not an issue however it may put some prospective parents off.
What you described seems enough space but that will be judged on pre inspection Ofsted visit. They say you need at least a double mattress size of clear space per child. Your own children will have an impact on the total number of children allowed. At the moment it's 6 under 8, 3 of whom can be in the Early Years group (not in full time education) one of whom can be under 1. So if all is well with space you should be allowed to care for 4 children under 8 in total.
With the money making side ... it depends on demand and a number of childminders in your area. Best check if there is demand for childminders. I have a friend who spent nearly 12 months waiting before she signed the first contract. She's making hardly any money with just one part time child to look after.

nannynick Wed 31-Aug-11 13:26:58

Considering you are in Scotland, can I point you towards the Scottish Childminding Association website which may well be of use to you.

Many things are similar in terms of childcare legislation between England, Scotland, Wales, NI, Jersey/Guernsey but there can be things that differ. So getting advice from people who live in your area can a lot of help.

With regard to money... do you need to earn money as soon as you leave your current job? If so, then starting a business may not be for you as with a business there is no guarantee of having any income.
Saying that I've known of childminders who have had a turnover of over £50k (don't know what their profit was, they wouldn't say) but that's in Surrey/Berkshire where demand is high and childcare fees are on the high side... plus they obviously cared for a lot of children and had an assistant working for them.

Do as much research as you can into demand for childcare in your area and existing providers - how would you be different from other childcare providers. has a search facility which will find local childcare providers. It might not list them all but it would be a starting point.

Jasbro Wed 31-Aug-11 20:08:24

All in all, preparing to be a childminder took me about a year - and picking up enough work another six months. I had about 18 months with no or little income - so you need to bear this in mind. It can probably be done quicker, and I'm in London, so the whole system might be better in Scotland anyhow.
Dog is not a problem, although you will need to show how you will ensure you keep children safe from dog poo, how you ensure there is no risk to children etc. Some parents might not be keen, but that's just the way it goes anyhow.
In terms of space, you don't need a lot. I have a living room, a kitchen and my daughter's bedroom, and that is fine - I am registered to look after 2 under 5s plus 2 5-8 year olds as well as having my own 3 year old.
I did find there were some parents who didn't like the fact I had no childcare experience. But then others did not see this as an issue. From my experience so far, I think you will find, you end up looking after kids whose parents share similar attitudes and values as you, and everyone has their own idea of who would be right for their child.
In terms of money, I suppose this is difficult for me to say as I don't know about the cost of childcare in your area. However, taking on 2 children full time and one part time I earn as much as I earned going to work in a job where I was on about £35K salary a year. Obviously there's expenses but as I do not pay for childcare for my own child, it now works out very profitable for me.
I recommend you start by doing lots of research into local childcare demand, and look at how much you could charge, and go from there. Good luck!

fivesacrowd Wed 31-Aug-11 20:51:42

Hi there, I started the registration process with the then Care Commission last August and registration came through in March. Now SCSWIS so may take longer (or less time) now. You don't need any childcare qualifications to register, but they do look for a genuine interest in children and a desire to undertake relevant training. As far as accommodation goes, if you've a downstairs loo thats great as you may be able to just register the downstairs of the house which cuts down on the risk assessment you'll have to do (but you must have a quiet area away from the play area).
You'll have to do a full risk assessment, have environmental health assess your kitchen and the fire brigade come and do a fire assessment (three burly firemen in their fire engine - kids were soooo happy - me even happier wink
Contact the SCMA and your local SCSWIS office who'll send you all the info you need to start the process.
Depends on area what you charge, but here its about £30 - £40 per day or about £5 per hour (some cm charge extra for outings etc, some like me include all extras in price cos I'd go mental if I didnt take them out).
If you've school age children or go to baby & toddlers groups you may find that word of mouth is enough to get you business or you can advertise locally (I know a few cm who've picked up work from Gumtree). My local CM group is brilliant and I'm now full thanks to them passing on my details.
Good luck. I talked about registering for years before I finally did it and although I'm only 6 months in, I'm loving it!

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